Inclusion WA announced as finalists in 2016 Community Service Excellence Awards.

Inclusion WA has been announced as a finalist for two categories in the 2016 Community Services Excellence Awards (CSEA). The Community Services Excellence Awards recognise the important role organisations in the community sector play in making a positive difference to people, families and communities through collaborative, innovative and creative services.

The first nomination recognises Inclusion WA’s commitment to Outstanding Commitment to Citizenship Empowerment for their work in the Wheatbelt community of Toodyay. After being approached by the Shire of Toodyay in November 2014, Inclusion WA has been working alongside the community of Toodyay to empower local residents and community groups to create an inclusive and welcoming community for all via the Toodyay Inclusive Community Program (TICP).

The TICP has delivered an impressive 5,654 hours of inclusive sport and recreation in Toodyay, leading to many previously disconnected community members joining local clubs and participating in civic life. The partnership with the Shire of Toodyay has strengthened the community by utilising, empowering and activating local assets and has also drastically reduced youth-related crime.

The second nomination recognises Inclusion WA’s partnership with the City of Bayswater in the Local Government and Community Services Collaboration category. The partnership began in 2012 after the City of Bayswater identified that their community groups and sporting clubs were unsure of how to cater for disadvantaged community members, including people with disabilities. The City engaged Inclusion WA to assist with mentoring and training for these clubs, to give them the skills they needed to develop a more inclusive and welcoming environment.

Driven by a local steering group consisting of key community stakeholders, the steering group developed the annual Bayswater Have A Go Day, an opportunity to bring together a range of local community groups and sporting clubs showcasing the participation opportunities available in and around the City of Bayswater.  There have been six events to date which has seen over 1,000 local residents engaged in sport and recreation, and has grown from 86 attendees in 2012 to over 850 attendances in 2016.

Both projects are perfect examples of community driven initiatives that develop into inclusive communities, giving individuals the opportunity to improve their mental health, physical health and create a sense of belonging. Inclusion WA is honoured to be recognised as a finalist for these two categories and is looking forward to the announcement of the winners.

Award finalists and winners will be honoured and celebrated at a Gala Ceremony on 4th May 2016 at the Hyatt Regency, Perth.

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